Spinach tofucakes, seaweed bibimbap, veggie burgers—the meat-free options abound at Mark’s Kitchen, and many are even vegan. Every third Thursday of the month, the obvious appreciation for the planet extends to the community, as Mark’s channels a perfect of its profits back into local charities.
Sticky Fingers has made its name as a 100% vegan bakery, but its goodies are a treat for everyone. Of course, the Columbia Heights sweet shop is best known for its homemade cakes and cupcakes, but it also has an extensive sandwich menu, while a vegan brunch is served on weekends and gluten-free options are also available. The shop has a nice retro vibe, with an old-school, glass cupcake display case, vintage wall decor and a super friendly staff. And if that woman behind the counter looks familiar, it’s because she has appeared and won several times on Food Network’s Cupcake Wars.
For the Hoang family, opening Pho 14 was a dream come true. Owner Tommy was inspired by his mother, Nga, who grew up in a small town in Vietnam, where she became well-known for her culinary skill, especially with vegetarian dishes. She and her husband hoped to one day open a family restaurant where she could share her talents with others, but their dream was dashed when he was taken prisoner at the end of the Vietnam War. By the time the couple was reunited more than four years later, their plans to open a restaurant had become a distant memory. Today, Nga's passion for cooking has been reignited at Pho 14, where diners feast on authentic Vietnamese dishes inspired by her recipes. There are steaming bowls of pho, of course, brimming with tender rice noodles and garnished with bean sprouts, hot peppers, and fresh basil leaves. Banh xeo (Vietnamese crepes) are rolled up with shrimp and green onions and served with a homemade fish sauce, while five types of spring rolls help get meals off to a delicious start.